Greetings and salutations, everyone; yes, once again it is I, Mani the purebred border collie, filling in for the guy I live with, and here to bring you up to date on the latest news from our garden. You may remember me from such equally large-numbered posts as “One Hundred Snowdrops”, among so many, many others.
Here I am in a characteristic pose. Of course, the guy I live with put something on top of his head, so I would pay attention. It was my stuffed hedgehog toy. I’d left it outside and it really needed to go into the washing machine, to get all clean again. Well, the first thing that happened today, and it was a pretty big deal since almost nothing has been happening here lately (well, nothing hyper-interesting), is that this morning we had a large visitor perch in the honey locust tree. That was very interesting. Can you see it? How about now? We noticed this because there were a couple of crows making a terrific racket in the tree. The owl ignored them.
It moved up the tree and after a while it went to sleep. It got very, very quiet in the back yard, after the crows left.
Maybe I should back up a few days and make this post even more fascinating, and to explain the title. The guy I live with went out for a while, a few days ago, to take his mom somewhere, and on the way home he stopped at a nursery (believe it or not), and found a small bag of tulips which were on sale. ‘Prinses Irene’, which he says is one of the best. It was featured on a blog post a few years ago but I thought I’d show it again.
And so, while I was at Day Care, he went over to his friend’s house and planted the tulips. He felt all excellent for getting these tulips at a discount.
Then today, a big box came, and guess what was inside?One hundred bulbs of the tulip, ‘Prinses Irene’, which he had ordered for his friend, and forgot that he did. They came from Van Engelen, if you needed to know. They were, of course, cheaper than the ones in the bag.
He felt kind of stupid, but said that his mind has been going, lately, and not terribly slowly, either.
Not to mention a hundred ‘Valerie Finnis’ grape hyacinths. He says that’s a nice one. And, naturally, there were other bulbs in the box.
I did forget to mention that it rained here the other night. Tuesday night. We went out, at Tinkle Time, and it was raining. We got less than a quarter of an inch of rain. About six millimeters. But it smelled good the next day. The guy I live with said it could rain more. It probably won’t, though. There’s no rain in the forecast for the next week.
We did have a couple of freeze warnings here, two nights in a row, in fact, but nothing froze. It froze in other places. The guy I live with says that it probably won’t freeze here until next month, and then the temperature will drop “horribly”, but at least there’s been enough cold to start the woody plants on their journey into winter. This is the Wasatch maple, Acer grandidentatum. It’s very similar to the eastern sugar maple, but, you know, western. The owl was still in the locust tree, asleep, when the sun began to go down.(The guy I live with tried to explain to me that the sun doesn’t really “go down”, but I began to get dizzy thinking that we were moving instead of the sun.)
I guess that’s it. I know I kind of rambled, but that’s what we purebred border collies do, when we’re not super focused on something very important. Here I am, with the sun not actually going down, just looking like it is.
Until next time, then.
The only time I’ve encountered an owl was in college. I was walking through a section of campus named, colloquially, “rape hill” when silently, this enormous owl swooped in on my right side and perched on the bare branch of a tree right above me. We stared at each other for a few seconds. He won that contest as I was spooked enough as it was. I didn’t need its huge talons coming at me. Beautiful birds. Just super creepy.
They are kind of creepy, with those enormous talons. But they help out in the garden ….
Mani you are too cute!
Thanks; people say that all the time, so it must be true, huh?
Now you can save some for your yard! Those are very pretty tulips. What happens to me is I order some bulbs (late as usual) and the merchant says “sorry we are out”. Then fall comes and I get mad waiting for the bulbs to arrive and wondering where they are! Ha ha memory loss is charming in all its forms. They say dogs have a short memory, but I don’t know. I think they remember for quite a long time. What do you say Mani? We’ve had almost 5 inches of rain in 3 days! Do owls just sleep where they happen to be during the day? I thought they found a little hollow or crevice and made it their own, perhaps littered with little rodent skulls.
The guy I live with, who, as you may know, knows everything, says that the Great Horned, which is what the owl is, sleeps in the tops of trees during the day. There’s always a tree with crows or blue jays or magpies or even smaller birds yelling at a sleeping owl. Apparently their favorite food is cottontail. Kind of gross and scary, I know. At this time of year there’s always this “Why didn’t I get….” bu;bs, more asters, things like that. And then, come spring, all that is forgotten. We might have gotten five inches of rain (including snow) since the first of the year. It’s really dry here (it’s dry anyway, but this is exceptional). The forecast this morning was for some snow later in the week, which would be okay, but now, just a “chance of showers”. Right now it’s seventy-seven degrees (twenty-five C), thirteen percent humidity, and breezy.
Judging from your comment on Border Collie focus, Mani, I deduce my husband is at least partly of your breed. Oh, the ‘Prinses Irene’ tulip is lovely, particularly the color. How lucky the friend is. We can’t grow tulips where I live, alas, although we can grow many of the plants showcased in the guy you live with’s garden. Yesterday I came home with two cartons of native plants from the annual sale. Last night was particularly moisture-laden at the beach, and this morning plants and ground were wet, and around the plants awaiting digging in the air was fragrant with chaparral scent. I feel like tramping through brush, the kind of brush over which Great Horned Owls are known to circle. Were you particularly yappy, Mani, when you spied the owl? If owls can withstand the cacophony of crows, they probably can disregard the commanding barks of an excellent dog at the base of a honey locust tree. Or perhaps you gave the silent respect due another majestic beastie.
Actually, I didn’t pay that much attention to the owl, according to the guy I live with, who says I was fixated on the squirrel and didn’t look anywhere else in the tree. He also says that last winter, when I was littler, I got scared by loud hooting out in front, in the middle of the night. He also says when he moved here there weren’t any crows. Or blue jays. Just ravens. And he also says that he would trade being able to grow tulips for being able to grow Salvia clevelandii. Gardeners are that way, I guess.